Home Education Teaches us About Life, Death, and Taxidermy Home Education Teaches us About Life, Death, and Taxidermy
Rachel (Kate Reed) and her mother Carol (Jemma Churchill) sit bedside holding vigil over Philip (Richard Ginn). They aren’t waiting to see when he will die,... Home Education Teaches us About Life, Death, and Taxidermy

Rachel (Kate Reed) and her mother Carol (Jemma Churchill) sit bedside holding vigil over Philip (Richard Ginn). They aren’t waiting to see when he will die, he is in fact dead. They are sitting, waiting, doing everything that can, to entice the dead father back to life with poems, preparations for celebrations, and continuing on about their day as if his return were imminent.

homeeducation

Recently screening at Screamfest in Hollywood, California, Home Education is an elegant mood piece that entertains while not always circling back to answer the questions it raises. While father lay dead, decomposing upstairs Carol dictates teachings to her daughter. Rachel studiously scribbles down the nonsensical, germaphobic reasonings of her agoraphobic mum circuitous reasonings on life, death, decomposition and so forth. It isn’t until Rachel decides to go out into the forest for a walk that she learns more about what is going on upstairs.

Reed’s portrayal of Rachel has a supple tenderness that does little to hide her tenacity. In the meantime Churchill’s portrayal of Carol is stubborn, pig-headed, and strangely terrifying. Beautifully shot, the film has a Gus Van Sant elegance to it. Unfortunately the short also features Van Sant’s penchant for cut aways and seemingly unrelated symbolisms. These really aren’t all that bad, but they are the things one is left with, instead of the meaning of the film.

Thankfully, the strong performances, the accomplished filmmaking, and the brooding photography make Home Education a short with watching, even making time for.

RATING: UR

Genre: Horror
Runtime: 24 mins. 50 sec.
Directed By:
Andrea Niada
 Written By: Andrea Niada

Norman Gidney

Norm(an) Gidney is a nearly lifelong horror fan. Beginning his love for the scare at the age of 5 by watching John Carpenter’s Halloween, he set out on a quest to share his passion for all things spooky with the rest of the world.

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